Newcastle’s two Higher Education institutions, Newcastle and Northumbria Universities, have both been nominated for the Times Higher Education (THE) University of the Year Award 2022, firmly cementing the city as a northern powerhouse of world-leading research and education.
It is the first time, outside of London, that two institutions from the same city have appeared on the same THE University of the Year shortlist. Nomination is a recognition of exceptional performance, as well as bold, imaginative and innovative initiatives that have advanced a Higher Education institution’s reputation during the academic year 2020/21.
For Northumbria University it marks a transformation to become the UK’s first research-intensive modern university. The strategy, which began in 2008, embeds quality research at the centre of everything that the university does, has a clear social mobility mission, and is aligned to business and the demands of the regional and local economy.
Newcastle University has been recognised for stepping up its commitment to sustainability by embedding Environmental Justice, alongside Social Justice, as one of its core institutional values. This was in response, not only to the climate and ecological emergency, but also to calls from students for their University to be at the forefront of addressing the biggest global challenges facing their generation.
Building on its long-established expertise in sustainable development and climate research, the University is working to embed these core values throughout its research, education, operations and work with communities across the globe.
Working together with students, colleagues, alumni, local and global partners, Newcastle has established new student scholarships, leadership programmes and teaching modules and the University’s achievements were recognised by The Times Higher Education Impact Rankings 2022 with Newcastle ranked 8th in the world (1st in the UK) for sustainable development.
Together, the cities of Newcastle and Durham now constitute a Northern Research Powerhouse with the largest concentration of researchers outside London, important for the Northeast economy, for inward investment, for influencing policy and for levelling up.
Professor Andy Long, vice-chancellor and chief executive of Northumbria University, said: “Newcastle is now home to one of the largest concentrations of researchers in the UK. Together we are building a northern research powerhouse that is helping Newcastle and the region compete on equal terms with other regions both here in the UK and globally.”
Professor Chris Day, vice-chancellor and president, Newcastle University, adds: “Although we have each been shortlisted in our own right and for different reasons, there is no doubt that each of us owes some of that success to the other, as well as to our partners here in the City.”
Leader of Newcastle City Council, Cllr Nick Kemp said: “We are delighted that Newcastle’s two outstanding universities have been recognised for their achievements. They are a vital part of the fabric of our great city, and nomination is testament to the drive and ambition that has made Newcastle a centre of excellence.”
“As anchor institutions, our universities are key partners in making Newcastle a fair and inclusive place where everyone can thrive. To be the first city outside London to have two institutions nominated makes us very proud, and not surprised – our universities are leading the way by working together to shape how we live.”